We asked one of our student mentors who achieved at ATAR of 98.8 last year, to write a guest blog post on study tips for senior students. Read his post below.
Hey Students! It’s that time of year again, exams are looming and you are studying up very hard for them. Here are a few tips and tricks to help you get ahead of your studies and smash these exams!
ESTABLISH A STUDY ROUTINE:
Doing well in Year 11 and 12 is all about studying consistently. Doing 6 days of 30 min study sessions is more effective than a single 3-hour session once a week. Try to establish a good study routine which;
- Prioritises frequent study
- Focuses on course content
- Involves attempting exam type questions
- uses study and ‘no’ study spaces
Try to study during times that work best for you. For me, I found it hard to study during the evenings and at home, so the following study routine worked best for me.
My Study Routines
- Last year, I would arrive at school at 8 am well before school started (country buses run very early).
- I would spend an hour before school to revise course concepts before class. And would stay in the library after school in the afternoons until 5 pm where at 4:30 I would be attempting a practice exam question.
- My weekends were pretty busy – sport on Saturday, work on Sunday – I didn’t have much time to study
- This meant I rarely had to study in the evenings when I was tired. I saw home as a place to relax. Good habits are difficult to form, but also easy to stick to.
Make sure to get into a study routine now if you can. With exams only a month away, it’s important to make these next few weeks count.
LOOK AFTER YOURSELF:
Study can be very tiring. Everyone wears out and needs to recharge eventually. Here are some things you’ll want to look after to make the next few weeks easier.
- Make sure to drink plenty of water and eat healthy food, as your body needs to be looked after too!
- Setting a bed time. Your brain and body need at least 8 hours of sleep each night to fully recharge. Having a consistent bed time with no late nights will leave you feeling more sharp and attentive during your exams.
- Get plenty of exercise! Get out have plenty of fresh air. Take breaks! Exercising frequently helps keep blood moving and oxygenated in your brain.
- Set some time to be social. Whether it be a Friday evening, or Saturday afternoon, setting a time to spend with friends allows you to unwind without impacting your study load.
Keeping yourself organised is important for making your study more efficient. Sick of not being able to find your notes from Term 1? Here are some tips on how to stay organised.
How to organise yourself?
- Have a neat and tidy filing system that gives you quick and clear access to your notes.
- Develop a study schedule which keeps you on top of your assessments and gives you an indication of when you need to study.
So how do I make good notes?
- Keep your notes separate to your problems/ workings and practice essays.
- Summarise your notes content into one A4 sheet of paper before each assessment.
- KISS Principle – Keep It Simple and Straightforward
- Use a photocopier to shrink and combine notes pages if you need to take them into the exam (applicable for Application, Methods and Specialist)
Here is an example of my study notes that I used for my Methods Exam in Year 12 (click to enlarge):
Hopefully, you found at least some these tips a helpful reminder of how to make your exam study easier. I wish you all the best of luck for your upcoming exams.
Henry Delbridge (ATAR 98.8)
Optimise Learning Student Mentor